UAAP: NU Lady Bulldogs gun for first round sweep

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 19 2022 06:23 AM

The NU Lady Bulldogs are looking to go 7-0 in UAAP Season 84. UAAP Media.
The NU Lady Bulldogs are looking to go 7-0 in UAAP Season 84. UAAP Media.

MANILA, Philippines -- National University (NU) looks to complete a seven-game sweep of the first round when the Lady Bulldogs take on the University of the Philippines (UP) in UAAP Season 84, Thursday at the Mall of Asia Arena.

The Lady Bulldogs have been dominant so far in the women's volleyball tournament, with six wins in six matches. Their rookies, notably Michaela Belen and Alyssa Solomon, have more than lived up to expectations and currently rank sixth and seventh in the league in scoring.

NU is also the most efficient team in the league in terms of spiking, with a 38.89% success rate through six matches. They are way ahead of Adamson University, which ranks second at 31.2%.

But NU head coach Karl Dimaculangan is downplaying their superb start to the season, instead pointing to the areas they need to improve on. The Lady Bulldogs are among the most error-prone teams in the league, averaging 27 unforced errors per contest.

"Ang message ko naman palagi sa team is to stay hungry, kasi wala pa naman kaming napapatunayan," said Dimaculangan, who is in his first season in charge of the NU women's volleyball team.

"First round pa lang," he added. "Hopefully, matapos namin 'yung round ng maayos, at ready ulit sa second round."

The Lady Bulldogs will be up against a Fighting Maroons team that has now dropped three consecutive matches after a strong start to their campaign.

UP is coming off a straight sets loss to De La Salle University where they managed a paltry 17 kills, with rookie star Alyssa Bertolano held to just four points in two sets.

Opening serve is at 12 noon.

Opening the day's slate of games is Adamson vs. University of the East, with the Lady Falcons seeking to bounce back from a five-set defeat to University of Santo Tomas last Tuesday. The Lady Warriors, meanwhile, are still in search of their first win after a 0-6 start.

At 4 p.m., it will be a rematch of the UAAP Season 81 finals as Ateneo de Manila University takes on University of Santo Tomas (UST). Ateneo is carrying a three-match winning streak into the game, while UST will look to build on their hard-earned win against Adamson.

Closing out the day is La Salle vs. Far Eastern University at 6 p.m.